Water Efficient Maize for Africa

Published on 26 April 2010

Research Areas


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Start Date: 1 February 2008 | End Date: 31 January 2013


The AATF project “Combining Breeding and Biotechnology to Develop Drought Tolerant Maize for Africa” (DTMA-II) will combine the benefits of Monsanto’s molecular breeding, genomics and biotechnology platforms and CIMMYT’s maize breeding program with AATF’s capacity for product development management, stewardship and deployment to significantly enhance the level of drought tolerance in hybrid maize seed available to smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa.

CIMMYT is in a unique position to enhance this project through its well established, successful conventional breeding program that has improved the drought tolerant phenotype in maize specifically adapted to sub-Saharan conditions.

Specific CIMMYT Project Objectives within the Technical Component

Objective 1: Establish capacity in Africa to enable technical work, including materials, people and plans for analysis, back crossing, mapping, breeding and field testing.
Objective 2: Conduct molecular analysis of existing CIMMYT maize lines entering the breeding program in sub-Saharan Africa to enable objectives #3 and #4.
Objective 3: Improve CIMMYT lines by incorporating relevant QTLs using state-of-the-art marker assisted breeding system.
Objective 4: (Monsanto) Conduct marker assisted breeding using Monsanto’s proprietary marker and bioinformatics systems to improve CIMMYT drought tolerant germplasm and identify Quantitative Trait Loci (QTLs) in CIMMYT drought tolerant germplasm.
Objective 5: Develop tropical hybrids containing drought tolerance transgenes for testing in sub-Saharan Africa.
Objective 6: Develop Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and conduct rigorous field tests in compliance with all regulations.

Research Partners


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